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MotoGP Phillip Island 2023 preview and schedule: All details and times for the Australian GP

Francesco Bagnaia and Jorge Martin, pictured in last year's race at Philip Island, will be going head-to-head for the championship.
Photo by Gold and Goose / Icon Sport

After another very eventful weekend in Mandalika, MotoGP reaches the first leg of its triple-header, as the riders and teams will tackle the spectacular Phillip Island circuit.

MotoGP Phillip Island 2023 schedule

The MotoGP will remain in the east, just as it has in the past few rounds. As a result, we are looking at another early schedule in terms of watching the sessions. It is a routine we have become accustomed to after races in India, Japan and Indonesia and that will carry on for two more races, in Thailand and Malaysia.

As far as the structure of the weekend goes, nothing will be different. Friday will contain a 45-minute free practice session to start the weekend, followed by the practice session that will give automatic Q2 promotion to the ten fastest riders. On Saturday morning -Australian time- riders will go out on track for a half-hour session before qualifying, which is split in two segments.

As in every weekend of 2023, two races will take place in Philip Island for the MotoGP class. The first will last 13 laps and will take place on Saturday, while the second will be run for 27 laps and will be the main attraction.

FRIDAY UPDATE: Because of severe weather conditions predicted for Sunday, the schedule has been modified. The Grand Prix will take place on Saturday, in the Sprint’s place. The Sprint will instead take place on Sunday, if the weather conditions allow it.

´╗┐Session
Date
Times

Free Practice 1

Friday, October 20th

00:45 AM - 00:30 AM

Practice

Friday, October 20th

05:00 AM - 05:00 PM

Free Practice 2

Saturday, October 21st

00:10 AM - 00:40 AM

Qualifying 1

Saturday, October 21st

00:50 AM - 01:05 AM

Qualifying 2

Saturday, October 21st

01:15 AM - 01:30 AM

Grand Prix

Saturday, October 21st

05:00 AM - 05:45 AM

Warm Up

Saturday, October 21st

23:40 PM - 23:50 PM

Sprint

Sunday, October 22nd

03:00 AM - 03:50 AM

MotoGP Phillip Island 2023 weather prediction

After a very hot weekend in Mandalika, the situation will be polar opposite in Phillip Island. Friday will be the hottest day, but the temperature are only expected reach 21 degrees Celsius. That will drop by three more degrees on Saturday, but at least the weather is expected to stay dry. The same cannot be said for Sunday, as the Grand Prix is expected to take place in the wet and with a forecast of 14 degrees Celsius.

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Photo by Gold and Goose / Icon Sport

MotoGP Phillip Island 2023 preview

The gap between Francesco Bagnaia and Jorge Martin was up to 62 points when the paddock was in Catalunya at the start of September, but the situation has been ever-changing since then. The Spaniard’s form has been red hot, while the Italian has struggled to keep up, partly because of a severe accident in the aforementioned round.

After the Sprint in Mandalika, the top two in the standings swapped order, with Martin getting ahead by seven points. He crashed in the Grand Prix though and Bagnaia went on to win from thirteenth on the grid, something that put him eighteen points ahead of his opponent.

For the first time this season, we are expecting to see the full field of riders take the start in the races, with no replacement riders or absentees. Alex Marquez was the only rider that missed the last race and he will return after the rib injury he sustained in India.

Australian GP history

Phillip Island was the first host of the Australian Grand Prix for MotoGP, joining the calendar in 1989. It was replaced by Eastern Creek in Sydney for a few years, but returned in 1997. It remains one of the most unique tracks on the MotoGP calendar, which is beloved by fans and riders alike.

Casey Stoner has written history at the venue, winning his home race six consecutive times from 2007 to 2012, when he retired. He is joined at the top of the list by none other than Valentino Rossi, who has also won at the track six times in the premier class. Marc Marquez is first among current riders, with three wins.

In fact, the only other active rider to win at Phillip Island is Alex Rins, who achieved it last year, riding for Suzuki. It was a thrilling race, with as many as seven riders in contention for the win in the closing laps.


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